Palazzo dei Banchi (Palace of the Banks), Bologna

Palazzo dei Banchi (Palace of the Banks), Bologna

The final structure erected in the Main Square ("Piazza Maggiore") was the Palace of the Banks. Designed by Vignola, one of the great Italian architects of the 16th century, its spectacular frontage was strategically designed to obscure the alleyways of the rear market, earning its title from the historic presence of currency exchange institutions.

Featuring an asymmetrical façade with 15 rounded arches, flanked by grand Corinthian pilasters, the palace is further distinguished by its Mannerist arrangement of windows, creating the illusion of a cohesive gallery within a singular palace structure. Linking the edifice is a portico, referred to as a "pavaglione" (pavilion), to the Archiginnasio of Bologna, a prominent establishment of the University of Bologna.

As of 2015, behind the palace, intermittently, lies an open-air market showcasing local produce, while the interior accommodates a mix of commercial enterprises and residential units. Adjacent stands the city's Archaeological Museum and the Church of Santa Maria della Vita.

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Palazzo dei Banchi (Palace of the Banks) on Map

Sight Name: Palazzo dei Banchi (Palace of the Banks)
Sight Location: Bologna, Italy (See walking tours in Bologna)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Bologna, Italy

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